I’ll Try Anything

I think I’ve taken the concept of alternate medicine to a whole new level. Since the medical world has absolutely no idea why I’m in this deaf mess (sounds like a rap song) to begin with, I’ve been exploring other avenues, like acupuncture for instance.

My friend Linda found me Dr. Chi (think it’s his stage name?) who happens to take my insurance. How handy is that? I get to go eight times a quarter at twenty bucks a pop. I mean you can’t get a decent lunch in my neighborhood for that.

I will say Dr. Chi could use a decorator among other things, like a little Listerine. The first time I saw him and he bent down to look into my ears, I almost passed out. His breath was so bad at 10 o’clock in the morning that I thought it might just bring my hearing back (wishful thinking on my part).

His office, let’s say, is a little sparse. There’s nothing on the walls except one of those cheap rolled calenders you get in Chinatown when you buy a big fish. I mean how bout a little trip to Azuma, New York’s best, cheap house ware store, to pick up a few things. What about a babbling brook? Or a fish tank…something that says…we’re in an alternate world folks where you can relax and pretend we know what we’re doing.

The other thing I found odd was his toilet. It was mounted halfway up the wall. I actually had to climb onto it like a porcelain palomino since it has a two-toned seat. Hmm, he must have some very tall patients, I thought, as I relieved myself while taking in the sights.

He doesn’t say much, though he did everything but make love to my insurance card. “You make you deductible, yes?” Have I ever…three times over Kemosabe, thank you very much. After 3 doctors, 15 hearing tests, 2 steroid shots that could have financed a trip around the world, an MRI and a fat, little radiology bill, I’m covered baby.

I guess Dr. Chi is a minimalist in many ways since he doesn’t believe in robes either. When I asked him what to take off he said, ‘Just shoe, sock and sweatshirt.” So there I was in my tights and running bra looking rather Sears Catalogy freezing off my, it’s even gotten smaller, ass.

After administering 18 needles in my face and neck and a couple in my feet for good measure, he asked me how I felt. “Just fine,” I said, holding my breath since his was still permeating the room like old gym socks. I must have looked like a dead (but chic) porcupine lying there unable to move since if you do…OUCH!

To his credit he kept coming in to see how I was doing. “You okay?” “Sure, especially when you flick the needles like guitar strings…that’s especially fun for me since it feels like I’m being casually stabbed.

After 30 minutes be came and took them all out. “How you feel?” he asked. “Oh, like a brand new woman,” I told him. Frankly, I didn’t feel any different but promised I’d be back just the same. I have 7 sessions left after all. So what if they don’t do anything. And who really knows for sure?

That’s the thing here one needs to remember. It’s perfectly okay to take risks and feel stupid when you’re this desperate. I’m willing to do anything, and that includes believing whatever it is I’m opting for is going to help.

If I read that bungee jumping in a cow costume would bring my hearing back I have one word for you…MOO.

I think being open is a good thing. Modern medicine can be so limiting not to mention arrogant. These specialists specialize in making you feel hopeless and small. When my present doctor looked at me after he casually answered a text on his phone and said, ‘Your right ear’s done,” I wanted to unlock his bay window and jump out taking him, his fucking phone and his fat ass with me.

At least Dr. Chi, when I left, said, ”We bring ear back…you come…you hear.”

Suddenly that pleated calender with the Chinese couple canoodling in a kayak looked awfully good to me.

No one should ever even murmur…anything’s done, unless it’s a roast in the oven.


About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Amazon.com. Thanks.
This entry was posted in Health, humor, New York City, Uncategorized, writing and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to I’ll Try Anything

  1. I’m with you 100%! Sometimes we have to take things into our own hand when the people with the posh offices and huge egos give up so easily. Where the hell is Dr. House!? My co-worker has been through hell and back with breast cancer, but is cancer free now for years. She ran into the plastic surgeon who did her reconstruction and she said “Hi Dr. M” his response “You’re still alive?” Swear to God!!!
    Dr. Chi rocks with his positive attitude and gym sock breath!


    • Did he really say that? Where is he…I’m getting my cousin Gary from Staten Island and we’re gonna pay him a little visit. What is wrong with these people Top, I mean it. There is no empathy…just this assembly line mentality. NEXT!!! My guy has truly seen one too many ears. I’m so glad your friend is well.


      • Yes he did!! Biggest a-hole on the planet. His money would be better spent on a bedside manner class, instead of his custom made shirts.
        They really should just have conveyor belts installed in the office.


      • Ha…like at Ford. The insensitivity of the medical world will never fail to astound me. Dr. S. who has the bedside manner of a corpse, thinks I’m way too emotional. “You need to pull yourself together,” he has told me on more that one occasion. I think the possibility of losing your hearing altogether places you on the well deserved certifiable list as far as emotions go. I mean really…he should have gone into plumbing which I may very well tell him.


  2. Rob says:

    Another amusing piece Susannah. I enjoyed reading about your antics, as usual: many thanks.
    I have only the tiniest nagging doubt that it wasn’t intended as a joke and you’re really consulting a quack: must buff up my sense of humour.


  3. jimmie chew says:

    “like” 🙂


  4. skinnyuz2b says:

    I don’t blame you for trying alternatives. How many treatments from the past that were thought to be ‘out there’ are now concidered standard fare?
    As for the oriental decor, I went to a Chinese restaurant that moved into a previous Italian establishment, and they didn’t change a thing. Italian wall paper scenes, pictures, strands of plastic grape bunches, etc. And the background music was a collection of classic symphonies.


    • Oh Skinny, that’s so funny. I guess they just don’t have a knack for decor. There’s a massage place I go to also of Asian persuasion that looks like a bunker. Curtains separating little alcoves where you can hear the person next to you breathing. No frills, no thrills. Oh well…as long as the service is good we can just shut our eyes.


  5. Vasca says:

    I’m smiling as I read, Susannah. Having lived in Changsha & Qingdao China for several years, I totally ‘get’ it. Dr. Chi is typical…we had a good friend called ‘Dr Luke’ since no one could pronounce his name correctly. Among other things he did Acupuncture; and he was very good at it. He worked his magic on M…and trust me, that was the magic cure for a most painful problem. His office? Ha, ha! He also had ‘dragon breath’…but we loved him. He became a good friend…very sweet and also quite humorous. His office? Well, all I can say is ‘indescribable’…laughing all the while. Neither Dr. Chi or Dr. Luke are ‘quacks’…and I truly believe they help in more than one way. While living there I broke my collarbone and ‘the leading orthopedic surgeon in Qingdao’ was my doctor. His office was a postage stamp shared w/another doctor…talk about the Keystone Cops? Unforgettable. I pray your ears are not ‘done’…and Dr. Chi will help you!


    • If nothing else, Dr. Chi is a lot nicer even though he could use a mint. Sounds very exciting your years in China. You should write about it.


      • Vasca says:

        I do…I have a blog w/a large following. My readers comment via e-mail rather than on my site. It’s meant to encourage…and it’s 100% transparent…apparently that’s what my followers find appealing. I weave some of my ‘China experiences’ in and out. At least Dr. Chi keeps you smiling…that’s a win, win.


  6. D. D. Syrdal says:

    Hahaha! This is awesome. I’ve never had acupuncture but know a lot of people who have, and have seen amazing results. You may not see much after the first visit, but subsequent visits might be more productive. If your insurance will pay, go for it!


    • I am open to anything, even Dr. Chi’s promise that I will hear. I’ve been twice…I’ll go again. I like going when I’m really tired because then none of it, his breath, the 12 foot commode, really registers. It’s all like a dream just with needles in your head.


  7. I understand your desire to try anything. That whole episode reminds me of a slew of acupuncture visits to ease a pain for which I had been prescribed a boatload of mind bending ‘bandaid’ narcotics. Exact same decor, I guess it’s a cultural thing.

    The Chinese doc deduced everything by just checking my pulse, amazing. He made the fatal error of sticking me right between the toes with one of his needles in a spot which made me curse explosively at him in French. My only recourse since I was ‘pinned to the mat’. I then asked him if he spoke French.

    The other pain was completely gone for just that moment. Perhaps you could offer Dr. Chi some peppermints to mask the breath of death…


  8. Amara says:

    You have been nominated for a Versatile Blogger Award! More details here:


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